101.1 SYNOPSIS: In 2013, Michaela, her parents, brother Ben, sister-in-law Grace, and twin nieces Olive and Cal, are at the airport in Jamaica. The flight home is overbooked, so Michaela , Ben, and Cal , who has Leukemia, opt to take vouchers for a later fight.
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MICHAELA [NARRATOR]: No one can explain what happened to us on April 7, 2013. Some people called it impossible. Others called it a miracle. All I know is it was the day my life changed forever. If you’d seen us that afternoon, you probably would have thought we looked like a typical American family returning home from vacation. My brother, Ben, and his wife, Grace, still in love after 15 years. They’re twins, Olive and Cal, always bickering like an old married couple. And the real old married couple my parents. Still in perfect health, still trying to run my life.
Michaela as Narrator
Michaela, in fact, is the most compelling character from the very start and not just because she is the narrator of the show. Her raw guilt and shame is palpable from the moment she appears on the screen even though we have no idea why she might feel this way especially since she is with her loving family.
SOURCE: Michael Ahr (Den of Geek TV)
KAREN: It’s not just about you. This family needs something to celebrate.
MICHAELA: Okay, that’s a pretty backwards reason for a wedding, but
KAREN: And I know you love him.
MICHAELA [NARRATOR]: Typical, right? But what you couldn’t see is that Cal’s leukemia wasn’t responding to treatment or that Ben and Grace were desperately struggling to find a cure or that I still had nightmares about the car accident.
KAREN: Michaela Beth, even people that have made mistakes deserve happiness.
Wracked with guilt over a tragic accident, Michaela anguishes about whether she’s fit to be a police officer [cf. scene 101.8] and fiancée. When she mysteriously returns years later after being missing, she finds her life with a strange new purpose.
SOURCE: Nellie Andreeva
Mom’s favorite verse
KAREN: You know my favorite verse “All things work together for good.”
MICHAELA: “I don’t believe that anymore, Mom.
MICHAELA [NARRATOR]: How can I? Which is why, when I got the chance to stay away from home for even a few more hours, I jumped at it.
WOMAN [INTERCOM]: All passengers for Flight 537 to New York, John F. Kennedy Airport, your attention, please. This flight is oversold. We are offering travel vouchers in the amount of $400 for anyone willing to take a later flight.
MICHAELA: Yes. That’s me.
BEN: It’s $400 per person. That’s our next trip down to the Mayo Clinic.
CAL: I’ll stay with Dad.
BEN: There you go. Man time
GRACE: All right.
Use of “Manifest” in the Title
The term manifest refers to appearing or being present in a place or time as in a ghostly manifestation. Of course in the most basic sense it is the list of all passengers and crew aboard a plane. It could also refer to the term Manifest Destiny a phrase coined in 1845 by magazine editor John O’Sullivan to explain a young America’s right to expansion. It was believed God bestowed on America the ability to spread across the countryside. I don’t think our passengers will be taking over the world in a genocidal fashion but, they surely seem to have a specific purpose.
SOURCE: Tracy Palmer (Signal Horizon)